Magazine article Baylor Business Review

Take It or Leave It? Ethics & Faith at Work

Magazine article Baylor Business Review

Take It or Leave It? Ethics & Faith at Work

Article excerpt

Integrity (n.): 1) firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values, 2) an unimpaired condition, 3) the quality or state of being complete or undivided. (Definition from Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

"What does it mean to have integrity? Most of my students say it's when you do what you say you're going to do. But I add to that, it should have some kind of moral good too," Chavanne Chair of Christian Ethics in Business Mitch Neubert said. "To have integrity is to be the same person Monday as you are Sunday. And yet, a lot of people live separate lives. Some of my research explores how people integrate their faith in the workplace, and what happens when they do."

Work and worship are often compartmentalized into secular and spiritual spheres for Christians. According to the Baylor Religion Survey (BRS), a national study of beliefs and values in the United States administered by Gallup, less than half of employed adults who attend religious services regularly indicated they often or always see connections between faith and work. Essentially, half of those who regularly attend church don't see significant connections between their work and spiritual life.

"Business schools don't teach about faith at work, but most churches don't either," Neubert said. "Many churches focus on being a good steward of the money you make at work, but overlook how you can be a light with your ethics and how your work can honor God and bless other people."

Director of the Princeton University Faith & Work Initiative David Miller created a framework on faith integration at work. According to the framework, when someone brings their faith to work, it manifests in one of four ways:

ethics Faith motiving ethical behavior and excellence within the workplace. This could manifest itself as individual or collective ethics.

experience Faith offering meaning to work as a place to live out one's calling and a context for utilizing one's unique gifts and talents in serving others. …

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